A Perfect Way To Lose

A Perfect Way To Lose

Sept. 8, 2017

At first, it seems counter-intuitive.

On paper, those who seek perfection are amazing. Their vision is grander than mortals can understand. Their drive to greatness is impressive and noble.

But in real-life, do you know what seeking perfection means?

It means seeking losing.

Think about it, when do perfectionists bring up their perfectionism? They only bring it up when describing failure.

“Freddie is just so hard on himself when he loses. He’s such a perfectionist.”

“I just can’t get that project done in time. I need to make it perfect.”

“I got so down on myself during that last match. I’m a perfectionist, so I get so frustrated when I can’t do it right.”

Lose, lose, lose.

Do you know what problem-solvers say?

“Freddie doesn’t always look pretty, but he wins.”

“Here’s the project you requested. I had a few problems getting it together but I think this is a viable solution.”

“I was just playing horribly, but I made some adjustments and fought as hard as I could. Luckily I got the win.”

The people who are wildly successful don’t care about perfection. They care about getting the job done.

There’s going to be shipping delay? Okay, here’s what we need to do. It’s windy today? Okay, here’s the way I need to play to counteract that. We got an unlucky break? Let’s fight back even harder.

Circumstances are never going to be perfect. There’s no checklist that life is going to conform to. If you’re always looking for the stars to line up perfectly, you’re always going to be disappointed.

But concepts can be perfect.

Solving problems is a concept. No matter what happens, we’re going to finish this product. Imperfections will undoubtedly show up along the way; perfection is getting the problem solved.

Always trying to improve is a concept. Today I might post better results, but tomorrow I may not. If I’m constantly trying, though, success is inevitable. 

Striving for happiness is a concept. It may rain during our vacation, but we’re still having a great time. Or I may not love my job right now, but it’s paying the bills and giving me freedom to look for something else. If happiness is the goal, no amount of tiny imperfections stop us from being happy.

Striving for “perfection” is misguided and a road to constant failure.

Imperfections will always exist and by embracing them, we can be happy.

Don’t try to be perfect. Instead wear the rain as your raincoat.

As Sean Maguire taught us, the imperfections are the good stuff.


My book is called The Inevitability of Becoming Rich, and you can find that here.